Former UFC champion Anthony Pettis takes on boxing legend Roy Jones Jr. on Saturday's Gamebred 4 event.
On Saturday night, Gamebred 4 will host a fight card that matches MMA athletes against boxers live on PPV. The main event will have Boxing Hall of Famer Roy Jones Jr. against former UFC and WEC lightweight champion Anthony ‘Showtime’ Pettis. This is an interesting matchup, as the last time we saw Jones Jr. in the ring was against Mike Tyson in November 2020.
Gamebred 4 will take place in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, which happens to be where Pettis is from. Although it could be seen as him dictating terms by having it in his hometown, it just came together as he prepared his event called “Anthony Pettis Fighting Championship.” After Jorge Masvidal and his partner Dean called Pettis about doing an event, they were still in search of a venue. Pettis then injected the fact that he had a date and venue with the commission already set, so there were no more obstacles to overcome at that point.
Pettis has the luxury of doing these things as he is a promotional free agent. He is only under contract with the PFL to do their PPV series, not the season. Although he competed at 155 lbs, he stated that he walks around 195 lbs naturally. He was cutting about 40 lbs for each fight. “My last PFL fight, I knew I was done at lightweight, so I bulked up to 170. My target goal was 210-215, so I could cut down to 170 and compete with these bigger guys. This opportunity came up in January, and I was already at that weight, so we just transitioned to boxing. I’ll be fighting at 200 lbs,” said the 36-year-old Pettis.
Anthony Pettis vs. Roy Jones Jr. will stream live on PPV ($49.99)
Pettis continued, “Honestly, it’s weird (not cutting weight). I just had a dream that I missed weight. I was sleeping in my condo without my wife and daughter and had this dream about missing weight. It’s probably because I’m not thinking about it right now, as normally, this week, I would be cutting 4-5 pounds a day to make sure I’m within the range. Right now, I’m waking up 197-198, so it’s the perfect area.”
For this training camp, Pettis brought in veteran coaches Jorge Capetillo and Duke Roufus. Pettis told FanSidedMMA, “I loved it. I feel like MMA is a lot of chaos. It was cool to submerge myself into boxing with the footwork, defense, and the little intricate movements to fight eight rounds. It’s a pretty long time. That’s 24 minutes, and I’m used to an MMA fight that goes five rounds for 25 minutes which is the longest fight I have ever fought. Boxing is a marathon. Duke Roufus came out for half the camp with my little bro Joe Pettis, who will be in my corner. We had some great sparring partners. I was sparring with Caleb Plant and got some of the best sparring partners you can find in Nevada.”
Pettis is fighting boxing great Jones Jr. and knows that even though he is 54, Jones Jr. can still be competitive against someone who has never boxed professionally. Pettis isn’t sure whether he will continue to fight against older fighters and celebrities or if he will attempt to get after some young competition. Regardless, he is leaving it up to his trainer Capetillo to make that call. “I don’t know yet. I’m going to see how Saturday night goes. My coach has a lot to say about what level I’m in. I’m going to go out there, do this first test and see what comes of it. There are some fun fights out there with older boxers or boxers that have one or two losses on their record.”
Lastly, Pettis wanted to set the level of expectation for Saturday night and what the fans will be in store for when he steps into the ring with Jones Jr.
“I’m going to fight a smart fight. He knows I have youth on my side, so he is going to fight a smart fight. I can’t outbox him, but I have to outwork him.”